Chiefs Release RT Eric Winston, Could Chicago Bears Be Interested?


October 14, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; Kansas City Chiefs tackle Eric Winston (74) against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 38-10. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs taketh and the Kansas City Chiefs giveth.  Just a couple of days ago, the Chiefs took one of the top offensive linemen off the market when they applied the franchise tag to Brandon Albert.  Now, the Chiefs are adding a top prospect by releasing veteran right tackle Eric Winston.

In releasing Winston, the Chiefs save themselves about $700k in cap space but over $4.9 million in actual cash.   Winston confirmed the move on his Twitter account:

After the Albert tag and the trade for Alex Smith, many pundits speculated that the Chiefs would either try to trade the top pick in the draft or go in another direction besides the consensus #1 pick of OT Luke Joeckel.  Now that Winston has been let go, the belief is that the Chiefs could try to move Brandon Albert to right tackle and draft Joeckel.

For the Bears, it means another quality offensive lineman is on the market.  The Bears could stand to improve at all five offensive line positions, so Winston would offer an immediate improvement.  I’m not totally giving up on Gabe Carimi, mostly because I’ve heard his leg was still not right all last season.

I’m not sure if Winston could slide over to compete at LT, but I’m all in favor of raising the talent level across the board and let the Bears put the five best linemen on the field.

What do you think Bears fans?  Would the recently released Winston be worth a look for the Bears?  Where would you rank him among the other free agent options on the market?